By Nina Nuraisyah
History of Muller Schwanner Mountains
Biodiversity expedition ever conducted in the Muller-Schwanner Mountains region of the first may be done by Major Georg Muller, who tried to explore the island from East to West Kalimantan in 1825. Major Muller did not get to complete his mission, because it died in the River Bungan (child Kapuas River in West Kalimantan). Then C. A. L. M. Schwaner, a geologist born in Germany to continue exploration on behalf of the Committee for the Natural Sciences in the Dutch East Indies.
In geological exploration between the years 1843 to 1848, Schwnner became the first foreigner to cross the island of Borneo, from the South to the West. With his assistants, Schwanner Kahajan down, crossing in the vicinity of Bukit Raya, Kapuas River downstream to Sintang and continue to Pontianak. The results Schwaner then directs the exploration of the sources of coal a few years later. Molengraff, who visited the same area 50 years later, giving the name of mountains in Bukit Raya with the name of the Schwnaner, while the mountain range on the east up to the Stone Mountain Ayau gave the name Muller. The legacy of the Dutch exploration is often encountered by residents in the form of cement memorials around the Schwanner Mountains, there is also a form of long pieces of iron and a large skillet Bura River upstream (Barito creek).
Natural Resource Riches
Muller Mountains, located on the border between the District Murung Kingdom with the Province of East Kalimantan and West Kalimantan, have been filed by the District of North Barito (The late Mr. Badaruddin) to become a World Natural Heritage in 2001. Being a single circuit with Schwanner Mountains, two mountainous region is acting like a water tower island of Borneo. Upstream five major rivers in this region, namely Barito, Kahayan and Katingan that flows to Central Kalimantan, Kapuas River which flows into the West Kalimantan and the Mahakam River which flows into the East Kalimantan.
Biodiversity in two mountainous region is also relatively high. In seven expeditions organized in the Muller Mountains and Mount Moss in the years 2003-2004, the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) to obtain some of the following findings: 65% of bird species in Borneo live in this area; there are two types of primates and a type carnivores (Neofelis nebulosa) are contained in Appendix I of CITES; there are two types of primates and 5 species of rodents are contained in Appendix II of CITES, and discovered two new species of fish and 5 species of fish that enter the new record. One rare type of frog (Barbourula kalimantanensis) has also been found in the Schwanner Mountains.
Forest cover in the Mountains Muller and Schwanner Mountains is still relatively good. Forest National Park Bukit Baka-Bukit Raya (Schwaner Mountains) are associated with forests in the region Muller Mountains. East towards the forest in the region connect with Sapat Hawung Nature Reserve, and to the West-sea continuous with forests in Betung Kerihun National Parks.
Communities in Muller Schwanner
Forests in this hilly region provides a variety of resources for rural livelihoods. Inland Dayak tribes are divided into eight major language groups settled in around the region, namely the language Dohoi, Modang, Kayan Mahakam, Aoheng, Kereho, Mbaloh, Kanowit, and Keninjal. Ethnobotany study by LIPI in tumbles Naan showed that of 400 plant species commonly used, 350 species taken from the forest. While the same study by the University of Tanjungpura in shows there Kaburai tumbles 67 species of forest plants for food, 54 species of plants for medicinal, 16 species to complement traditional ceremonies, 11 types of materials for Crafts, and 6 types of wood for building materials.
Conservation Efforts In Muller Schwanner
Given the importance of forest area mentioned above, WWF-Indonesia encourage forest complex management schemes in the region Mountains Muller and Schwaner Mountains in an integrated manner. Complex management scenario Muller-Schwanner Mountains forest area covers 2.25 million hectares of forest area of ±. Certainty management will ensure the proper functioning water system for five major rivers in Kalimantan, keeping the biological wealth is still not much explored useful for human life, and ensure supplies of natural resources to support the rural society which lives permanently stay in the vicinity.
To achieve the above objectives, the Working Group on Heart of Borneo District Murung Kingdom in collaboration with WWF-Indonesia has conducted socialization and consultation in the village tumbles and tumbles Tujang Topus in May 2008. Both villages are located in the upper river at the bottom of the track Barito River Joyless. Residents of both villages agree when Muller Mountains region are conserved, even residents tumbles Tujang mention seven reasons supporting, namely: 1) to keep the water source, 2) for the survival of wildlife (especially animals commonly hunted for consumption); 3) maintaining customary land ( including historic sites); 4) maintain the source of livelihood (resin, gaharu, rattan, bird nest and medicinal plants); 5) keep the peace between the tribes; 6) to avoid natural disasters (floods and landslides), and 7) maintain fisheries resources.
Currently WWF Indonesia together with partners from local government and local NGOs in Central Kalimantan has conducted socio-economic study in six villages in the district Murung Kingdom, 3 villages in Gunung Mas and 9 villages in Katingan. This study aimed to determine the socio-economic conditions of communities around the forest, as well as identifying various natural resource whose existence is closely related to the daily life of villagers. This study will be followed by participatory activities Conservation Planning and Development of sustainable livelihood activities in the villages. All these activities aim as an effort in community strengthening program followed by forest resource conservation awareness efforts around the village.
Muller Schwanner Conservation
By Nina Nuraisyah